DECREE No. 79/2003/ND-CP OF JULY 7, 2003 PROMULGATING THE REGULATION ON THE EXERCISE OF DEMOCRACY IN COMMUNES
Pursuant to the December 25, 2001 Law on Organization of the Government;
Pursuant to Resolution No. 17/NQ-TW of March 18, 2002 of the fifth plenum of the IXth Party Central Committee on renewing and raising the quality of the political system in communes, wards and district townships;
Pursuant to Directive No. 10-CT/TW of March 28, 2002 of the Party Central Committee's Secretariat on continuing to boost the formulation and realization of the Regulation on grassroots democracy;
At the proposal of the Minister of the Interior,
Article 1.- To issue together with this Decree the Regulation on the exercise of democracy in communes.
Article 2.- The Regulation issued together with this Decision shall also apply to wards and district townships. The Minister of the Interior shall issue documents to guide the application of the Regulation on the exercise of democracy in communes to wards and district townships.
Article 3.- This Decree takes effect 15 days after its publication in the Official Gazette and replaces the Government's Decree No. 29/1998/ND-CP of May 11, 1998 promulgating the Regulation on the exercise of democracy in communes.
Article 4.- The ministers, the heads of the ministerial-level agencies, the heads of the agencies attached to the Government and the presidents of provincial/municipal People's Committees shall have to implement this Decree.
On behalf of the Government
PHAN VAN KHAI
REGULATION ON THE EXERCISE OF DEMOCRACY IN COMMUNES
(Issued together with the Government's Decree No. 79/2003/ND-CP of July 7, 2003)
Article 1.- This Regulation specifies works to be promptly informed and publicized by the commune People's Councils and People's Committees (hereinafter called the commune administrations) to people; works to be directly discussed and decided by people; works to be commented by people before being decided by State agencies; works to be supervised and inspected by people; and forms of implementing the Regulation on the exercise of democracy in communes.
Article 2.- The Regulation on the exercise of democracy in communes aims to bring into full play the commune people's right to mastery and their creativity, mobilizing the people's great material and spiritual strengths for socio-economic development, the improvement of people's lives, the raising of their intellectual standard, the maintenance of political stability, the enhancement of unity and the building of Party organizations, administrations and mass organizations in communes; into clean and strong ones; to prevent and overcome the situation of degradation, red tape and corruption among a number of officials and Party members, as well as social evils, thus contributing to the achievement of the target of a prosperous people, a strong country and an equitable, democratic and civilized society along the socialist orientation.
Article 3.- The promotion of the people's right to mastery must be closely linked to the mechanism of "the Party's leadership, the State's management and the people's mastery," bringing into full play the representative democracy regime, raising the working quality and efficacy of the local administrations, implementing the direct democracy regime at the grassroots for the people to discuss and directly decide on important and practical issues closely related to their interests and obligations.
Article 4.- Democracy must lie within the framework of the Constitution and laws, going hand in hand with order and discipline; rights must be in parallel with obligations; any acts of abusing democracy, violating the Constitution and laws and infringing upon the interests of the State and collectives as well as the rights to freedom and democracy and legitimate interests of citizens shall be resolutely handled.
WORKS TO BE INFORMED TO PEOPLE
Article 5.- The commune administrations shall have to promptly inform and publicize the following major works to people:
1. The State's undertakings, policies and laws directly related to the rights and interests of the commune people, including:
a/ Resolutions of the commune People's Councils, decisions of the commune People's Committees and those of superior authorities relating to the localities;
b/ The provisions of law on administrative procedures and settlement of affairs concerning people;
c/ The State's and local administrations' regulations on payers and collection levels of assorted taxes, charges and fees, as well as other obligations of people as prescribed by current laws;
2. The communes' long-term and annual socio-economic development plans;
3. The land use plannings and plans;
4. The annual estimates and settlements of the commune budgets;
5. The estimates and settlement of revenues and expenditures of funds, programs, projects and contributions mobilized from the people for the construction of infrastructure and public welfare projects of communes, villages and hamlets (hereinafter villages and hamlets shall be referred collectively to as villages) as well as their implementation results;
6. The programs and projects directly invested in, or donated to, communes by the State, organizations or individuals;
7. Undertakings and plans on capital borrowing for production development, hunger elimination and poverty alleviation;
8. The adjustment of administrative boundaries of communes and administrative units related to communes;
9. The results of the inspection, examination and settlement of negative or corrupt cases involving commune and/or village officials;
10. The social and cultural activities, the prevention and combat of social evils, the maintenance of security, social order and safety in communes;
11. The preliminary and final reviews of activities of the commune People's Councils and People's Committees;
12. The plans for gathering or exchanging land plots for larger ones in service of economic restructuring, agricultural development, farm economy and cooperatives;
13. The consideration and selection of poor households entitled to borrow capital for production development and construction of gratitude houses; the realization of policies towards families with meritorious services to the revolution, fallen heroes' families, war invalids and diseased soldiers who are presented with gratitude houses, savings books and health insurance cards;
14. The results of selection, priority order and organization of implementation of works under the programs and projects directly invested in, or donated to, communes by the State, organizations and/or individuals.
Article 6.- The commune administrations shall have to coordinate with the Vietnam Fatherland Front Committees, Vietnam Fatherland Front's member organizations of the same level and the village chiefs in supplying the information prescribed in Article 5 of this Regulation to the people in the following forms:
1. Publicly posting up written documents at the head-offices of the commune People's Committees, residential quarters and cultural centers;
2. Through the public-addressing radio system of communes and villages as well as grassroots cultural, information and propaganda organizations;
3. Organizing meetings between voters and deputies of the commune People's Councils.
4. At the meeting sessions of the commune People's Councils, meetings of the People's Committees, Vietnam Fatherland Front Committees and Vietnam Fatherland Front's member organizations of the same level, and village meetings;
5. Sending documents to households or village chiefs.
WORKS TO BE DISCUSSED AND DIRECTLY DECIDED BY PEOPLE
Article 7.- The people in communes and villages shall discuss and directly decide on the following works:
1. Undertakings on, and levels of, contributions for the construction of infrastructure and public-welfare facilities (electricity supply, roads, schools, health stations, cemeteries, cultural and sport facilities);
2. The elaboration of village codes or conventions of cultured villages, building of a civilized lifestyle, maintenance of security and order, abolishment of bad practices, superstition and social evils;
3. Internal affairs of the village population communities, suitable to the current law provisions;
4. The establishment of boards for supervision of construction works built with the people's contributions;
5. The organization of the protection of production and business, maintenance of security, order, social safety and environmental sanitation as well as other activities in communes and villages.
Article 8.- Apart from the contributions prescribed in Clause 1 of Article 7, the commune People's Committees may coordinate with the Vietnam Fatherland Front Committees and Vietnam Fatherland Front's member organizations of the same level in propagating and mobilizing people to make other contributions for mutual assistance, humanitarian or charity purposes on the principle of absolute voluntariness without imposing compulsory or arbitrary contributions on everyone.
Article 9.- Modes of implementing works directly decided by people
1. The commune People's Committees shall formulate plans and programs; coordinate with the Vietnam Fatherland Front Committees of the same level in directing and organizing the discussion of, and decision on, works defined in Article 7 of this Regulation by the people in one of the following forms:
a/ Organizing meetings of all people, household heads or voters representing households in each village for discussion, open voting or secret ballot;
b/ Distributing poll cards to households to collect their opinions.
The gathering of opinions, open voting at the meeting or secret ballot on each matter shall be decided by the people according to the provisions in Article 7 of this Regulation and must be recorded in writing for reporting to the commune People's Committees on the contents of the meetings and the conclusions on voted issues.
2. The commune People's Committees shall issue decisions to recognize the contents specified in Article 7 of this Regulation which are compliant with law provisions and voted for by over 50% of those participating in the meetings or those asked for their opinions.
3. The commune People's Committees shall coordinate with Vietnam Fatherland Front of the same level in directing village chiefs and heads of the Front's working boards to organize the implementation of affairs decided by the people and recognized by the commune People's Committees, with the supervision by the people's inspectorates or the supervision boards for works and projects, which are elected by the people.
4. The people shall have to observe and strictly implement decisions unanimously approved by over 50% of households in communes or villages.
WORKS TO BE DISCUSSED OR COMMENTED BY PEOPLE AND DECIDED BY THE COMMUNE ADMINISTRATIONS
Article 10.- Works which the commune administrations must put up for discussion or comment by people before making decisions thereon (or before submitting to competent authorities for decision) include:
1. Draft resolutions of the commune People's Councils;
2. Draft plannings as well as long-term and annual socio-economic development plans of communes, plans on economic restructuring and production restructuring as well as plans on development of business lines and trades;
3. Draft plannings and plans on the use of land in localities as well as the management and efficient use of public land funds of the communes;
4. Plannings on residential quarters; schemes on sedentarization and new economic zones; plans and projects on the mobilization and use of people's contributions for the investment in construction of communally-run infrastructures;
5. Draft schemes on demarcation and adjustment of the administrative boundaries of communes, schemes on splitting and establishment of villages;
6. Draft plans on the implementation of national target programs in the communes;
7. Undertakings and plans on compensation for ground clearance, infrastructure construction and resettlement;
8. Employment for laborers in the communes;
9. Other affairs which the commune administrations deem necessary.
Article 11.- Modes of implementing works discussed and commented by people before being decided by the commune administrations (or being submitted to competent authorities for decision)
1. Based on resolutions of the commune Party Committees and resolutions of the commune People's Councils, the commune People's Committees shall draft documents and plans and coordinate with the Vietnam Fatherland Front Committees and Vietnam Fatherland Front's member organizations of the same level in organizing the collection of public opinions in the following forms:
a/ Organizing meetings of all people or household heads for discussion;
b/ Distributing comment-gathering cards to each household;
c/ Organizing meetings of economic organizations for discussion;
d/ Placing letter-boxes for public comments.
2. The opinions of people at the meetings or their written comments must be summed up and reported fully and objectively for the commune People's Committees to consider and submit them to the commune People's Councils for decision according to their competence or submission to superior competent authorities for consideration and decision.
WORKS TO BE SUPERVISED AND INSPECTED BY PEOPLE
Article 12.- Works to be supervised and inspected by people in communes include:
1. Activities of the commune administrations, socio-political organizations, social organizations and professional organizations in the communes;
2. The results of the implementation of resolutions of the commune People's Councils and decisions as well as directives of the commune People's Committees;
3. Activities and moral quality of the chairmen of the commune People's Councils and presidents of the commune People's Committees, activities of deputies of the commune People's Councils, officials of the commune People's Committees as well as officials and public servants working in the localities;
4. The settlement of local citizens' complaints and denunciations;
5. The estimates and final settlement of commune budgets;
6. The process of organizing the construction, results of pre-acceptance tests and final settlement of projects built with people's contributions and projects directly invested in, or donated to, the communes by the State, organizations and/or individuals;
7. The projects implemented by superior authorities in the communes with direct impacts on the production, security, order, socio-cultural affairs, environmental sanitation and life of local people;
8. The management and use of land in the communes;
9. The collection and spending of various funds and fees according to the State regulations as well as various contributions of the people;
10. The results of the examination, inspection and handling of negative and corrupt cases involving commune officials;
11. The implementation of the regimes and policies on preferential treatment, care and assistance for war invalids, diseased soldiers, fallen heroes' families and people and families with meritorious services to the country, social insurance and social relief policies.
Article 13.- Modes of implementing works to be supervised and inspected by people
The people shall supervise activities of agencies, organizations and individuals directly by themselves or indirectly through socio-political organizations, their representative organizations or people's inspection boards in the following modes:
1. Attending personally (if being invited) or through their representative organizations the commune administrations' meetings on matters directly related to their rights and interests;
2. Contributing opinions on the evaluation of the biannual and annual reports on the activities of the commune administrations;
3. Giving comments on the work reports and self-criticisms of the chairmen of the commune People's Councils and the presidents of the commune People's Committees at the year-end final review meetings.
4. Participating in the vote of confidence for posts elected by the commune People's Councils;
5. Detecting agencies, organizations and individuals that infringe upon the people's right to mastery and show signs of corruption or wastefulness, using budget revenues and expenditures and people's contributions for wrong purposes, realizing programs and projects, using and managing land, making compensation for ground clearance in contravention of law provisions, or committing other acts of law violation; lodging denunciations and petitions to the commune administrations and competent agencies for clarification and settlement thereof then announcement of the settlement results.
Article 14.- Responsibilities of agencies, organizations and individuals for the people's supervision and inspection
1. The commune People's Committees have the responsibility:
a/ To invite representatives of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Committees, Fatherland Fronts member organizations of the same level and directly related subjects to attend the commune administration's meetings on matters related to the rights and interests of local people;
b/ To consider and settle proposals of agencies, organizations and individuals according to their competence and notify the settlement results to the proposers;
c/ To submit to competent agencies cases falling beyond their competence.
2. The chairmen of the commune People's Councils and the presidents of the commune People's Committees shall have to send to the village chiefs their reports on work performance and their self-criticisms at the annual review meetings for the village chiefs to organize the collection of people's opinions thereon.
3. Annually, the commune Fatherland Front Committees shall organize the vote of confidence among the Front's member organizations for key positions elected by the commune People's Councils. If the proportion of votes of confidence represents less than 50% of the participants, the commune Fatherland Front Committees shall propose the commune People's Councils to consider and remove such position holders.
4. The village chiefs shall coordinate with the heads of the Front's working boards in organizing meetings to gather people's opinions on issues to be decided by the people; sum up and accurately, objectively and truthfully report the people's opinions in writing to the commune administrations.
5. The people must not rally in large numbers, make petitions to authorities of levels higher than the prescribed ones, cause disorder and insecurity and resist persons on duty while their petitions are being considered and settled according to law provisions.
BUILDING VILLAGE POPULATION COMMUNITIES
Article 15.- Villages are living places of the population communities where democracy is exercised in a direct and broad manner so as to promote forms of self-managed activities of the population communities and where people are organized to realize the Party's undertakings and lines, the State's policies and laws as well as tasks assigned by superior authorities. The commune People's Committees shall have to direct, guide, support, supervise and inspect activities of villages.
Article 16.- Village meetings shall be organized once every six months or extraordinarily in necessary cases, with the participation of all voters, household heads or voters representing households, aiming:
1. To discuss and decide on internal affairs of the population communities regarding production, infrastructure construction, employment, hunger elimination and poverty alleviation, solidarity and mutual assistance in production and daily-life activities, as well as matters related to culture, social affairs, environmental sanitation, social order and safety in accordance with law provisions;
2. To discuss measures for the implementation of resolutions of the commune People's Councils, decisions of the commune People's Committees as well as the performance of citizens' obligations and tasks assigned by superior authorities;
3. To discuss and give comments on the reports on work performance and self-criticisms of the village chiefs, the chairmen of the commune People's Councils and the presidents of the commune People's Committees;
4. To elect and dismiss the village chiefs; elaborate village codes or conventions; appoint people to various boards, self-management groups or people's inspectors;
Resolutions of the meetings shall be valid only when they are approved by at least more than half of the participants and not contrary to law provisions.
Article 17.- Tasks and powers of the village chiefs
1. The village chiefs shall be directly elected by the people at village meetings, considered and recognized by the presidents of the commune People's Committees in their decisions and subject to the direction and management by the People's Committees. The presidents of the commune People's Committees may criticize, caution, temporarily suspend or dismiss the village chiefs when the latter fail to fulfill their tasks, infringe upon the people's right to mastery or commit corrupt or wasteful acts; fail to obey the direction and administration of the commune People's Committees; violate laws and/or other regulations of superior authorities.
2. Tasks, responsibilities and powers of the village chiefs
a/ To assume the prime responsibility and coordinate with the Fatherland Front's working boards and mass organizations in the villages in carrying out such activities as: convening and chairing village meetings; organizing the implementation of decisions of the villages; organizing the people to well implement the Regulation on democracy; organizing the elaboration and realization of the village codes or conventions; maintaining unity, order and safety in the villages; organizing the performance of tasks assigned by the commune People's Committees; gathering and reporting on the people's legitimate aspirations and requesting the commune administrations to deal with them; signing service contracts for the production and infrastructure construction on the basis of the village meetings' resolutions;
b/ To make biannual and annual reports on their work performance and self-criticisms and present them before the village meetings. Annually, the Fatherland Front's working boards shall, together with the Front's member organizations in the villages, organize the vote of confidence on the village chiefs. If the number of votes of confidence represents less than 50% of the participants in the voting, they shall request the organization of the village meetings to consider and dismiss the village chiefs and report such to the presidents of the commune People's Committees for decision;
c/ To be invited by the commune People's Committees to attend meetings on related issues. To make monthly reports on work performance to the commune People's Committees;
d/ To be entitled to participate in training and fostering courses and enjoy allowances prescribed by the provincial/municipal People's Committees.
Article 18.- Villages shall elaborate codes or conventions on internal affairs of the population communities, inheriting and promoting the community's fine customs and practices in accordance with current law provisions so as to abolish bad customs, superstition and social evils, maintain security and order, traffic safety and environmental sanitation and build a new, prosperous and civilized countryside.
Village codes or conventions shall be discussed and adopted by the village people at the village meetings. The village chiefs shall send the adopted codes or conventions to the commune People's Committees. After reaching agreement with the chairmen of the commune People's Councils and the Fatherland Front Committees of the same level, the presidents of the commune People's Committees shall send official dispatches requesting the presidents of the district-level People's Committees to approve these codes or conventions. The district-level Justice and Culture-Information Sections shall have to assist the presidents of the district-level People's Committees in appraising the village codes or conventions before approval.
Article 19.- Villages may establish conciliation teams, security teams, production protection teams and construction teams. These organizations shall be set up or dissolved according to the practical requirements of each locality. Members of these organizations shall be elected by the people and their operation shall be managed and directed by the village chiefs in coordination with the Fatherland Front's working boards.
Article 20.- All levels and branches shall have to build the grassroots administrations into clean, strong, effective and efficient ones, overcoming manifestations of red tape, irresponsibility or lack of democracy in the handling of works; to pay constant attention to the building of the contingent of grassroots officials; to work out plans on training and fostering in general education, professional knowledge and skills, political theory and working methods, thus meeting the requirements of tasks in the new revolutionary period.
Article 21.- Officials and employees of the administrations at various levels and people shall be obliged to strictly abide by the provisions of this Regulation.
Article 22.- The presidents of the People's Committees at various levels shall have to direct the implementation of this Regulation. Biannually, the presidents of subordinate People's Committees shall report on the implementation results to the presidents of the superior People's Committees; annually, the presidents of the provincial/municipal People's Committees shall report on the results of implementation of this Regulation to the Government (through the Ministry of the Interior).
Article 23.- The Ministry of the Interior shall have to direct, guide and monitor the implementation of this Regulation. The Ministry of Finance shall have to direct and guide its subordinate professional agencies to inspect the commune's finance as well as budget revenues and expenditures and provide professional fostering for financial staff in communes. The State Inspectorate shall have to provide guidance on the work of examination and inspection in communes, and professional fostering and guidance to the commune people's inspection boards. The Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Culture and Information shall have to guide the elaboration of village codes or conventions.
Article 24.- The Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee and Vietnam Fatherland Front's member organizations are requested to direct, guide and inspect their subordinate agencies to well perform the tasks defined in this Regulation.
Article 25.- In the course of implementing this Regulation, organizations and individuals that record achievements shall be rewarded and/or commended; organizations and individuals that violate this Regulation shall be handled according to the current law provisions.
For localities which fail to implement this Regulation, or do implement this Regulation but in a formalistic and inefficient manner, the presidents of the commune People's Committees shall be held responsible therefor and disciplined depending on the seriousness of their violations. The forms of discipline applicable to the presidents of the commune People's Committees shall be considered and decided by the presidents of the district-level People's Committees.
On behalf of the Government
PHAN VAN KHAI